10 Words Successful People Never Use (And How To Replace Them)
As James noticed in the Bible:
“…the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts.”
We all know success is a matter of repetition.
Our brain shapes itself based on our standard thoughts and behaviors. Repetition, however, is not just related to routines and physical endeavors. It is much deeper than that.
Words play a key role in how we convey our thoughts to the world, and they’re a result of repetition just as much as our mental and physical patterns.
The words you use can tell me a lot of things about your mind, your character, and your direction in life. Just by paying attention to what you say, I can get a broader understanding about your personality type.
Therefore, we can say that the words you speak have a direct correlation to the life that you’re living (or wish to live).
Successful people know this truth very well.
They pay a great deal of attention to both the thoughts they have and the words they pronounce.
They know what to say, when to say it and when to remain silent and say nothing.
Specifically, they tend to prefer the latter option whenever they come across the temptation to say the ten words listed below:
The word “but” means you’re everything but okay with someone else’s point of view. It means you’re basically discrediting their opinion, either because you don’t deem it valuable or you haven’t paid attention to it at all (you were just waiting for your turn to speak).
You’ll have far better conversations if you decide to add something instead of removing it.
So the next time you’re engaged in any type of verbal exchange, replace “but” with “and”, and watch the magic happen.
Never say never. I mean, literally.
It reduces trust, energy and motivation.
There’s probably many things that are not going to happen. You can’t resurrect your dog. It’s never going to happen, and that’s okay.
However, this word gets used too much, even when something is likely to happen. In that case, its sole purpose is to further diminish that likelihood.
Hence, replace “never” with “possible”, and don’t reduce the odds of positive happenings from the outset.
This one is probably the most common one among unsuccessful individuals. They always point out how something can’t be done, rather than finding ways to do it. Impossible harms you, your organization, your marriage and ultimately your life, and indulging in its use can never bring true happiness and peace of mind, no matter what you do.
And then, impossible is never final. If we believed its power, we probably wouldn’t have survived four hundred years of slavery or put a man on the moon.
Erase it from your vocabulary and start being realistic about your chances in life. And if you really have to, replace it with words like “impractical” or “non-viable”.
“No” is a very powerful word.
In a positive way, it shows that you’re able to prioritize your schedule and commitments. Saying “no” authentically gives you power and allows you to be more productive.
When I refer to the word as a negative one, I mostly focus on the tone in which you say it.
A “no” said while smiling, politely declining whatever is in front of you, will be way more tollerable than an arrogant and testy one. Hence, be careful with your body language.
You don’t have to necessarily replace the word in this case. Remember, instead, the importance of being polite while shaking your head in disagreement.
How you say “no” matters more than how often you say it.
As most words here, “if” can go both ways.
But generally speaking, no one likes it too much.
In most cases, it makes you come across as the guy who fears failure more than he loves success. It shows lack of confidence and a tendency to dwell on the past, which translates into not taking action at all.
“If” lets you stuck. It sucks the life out of you and hinders your progress. The sooner you’re able to get rid of it, the better.
Replace “if” with less toxic synonyms like “providing that” or “assuming that”.
Let’s be real.
As human beings, there’s very few things we can’t do. When we spit out the word “can’t”, we’re just telling ourselves that we refuse to do something, either because it is too difficult or too challenging.
But avoid jumping to conclusions too early.
Just because you don’t want to do it doesn’t mean that it can’t be done. Refuse to acknowledge your risk-averse behavior and call yourself out for refusing to tackle obstacles. Do your best to replace “can’t” with “can”. However, if you really think something is way beyond your capabilities, use the words “unable” or “unfit”.
Don’t every “try” to do something. Please, don’t just try.
You either do something or you don’t. You either commit or you surrender. There’s no in between.
Trying means you’re giving way too space to the possibility of failure.
You basically avoid success because all of your thoughts are centered around the fact that nothing might really work out in the end.
And then you feel stuck and helpless. Again.
I love Tim Grover’s quotes.
In his masterpiece “Relentless”, he explains that “…trying is an open invitation to failure, just another way of saying, ‘If I fail, it’s not my fault, I tried.’”
Hence, delete “try” and start using “will”.
This one is dangerous, especially when you’re trying to establish some kind of relationship with somebody.
“Maybe” shows lack of commitment and professionalism, besides readiness to walk away as soon as the minimum obstacle arises.
“Maybe” is toxic in every social situation.
You’ll never fall in love if you think that “maybe” she’s the right fit, just like you’ll never do a great job if you’re not completely sure and confident about your craft and the value that you can bring to the table.
Be straightforward with your intentions.
Remove this word from your vocabulary and start using either “yes” or “no”.
The blame game never goes out of fashion, and it causes most of the social harships we experience in our lives.
The word “fault” splits every environment into two categories:
those who messed up and those who didn’t.
It creates a culture of winners and losers when, instead, everyone should paddle in the same direction.
Not that personal mishaps should go overlooked. However, there’s a wide variety of more constructive alternatives for solving every problem. And all of them are better ways than simply being ashamed of somebody else’s lack of accountability and aggressively calling them out for it.
At the very least, you should replace “fault” with “responsibility”.
If you’re anything like me, you want to be sure about everything.
Nothing can’t be left to chance.
The word “soon” has the exact opposite effect. It translates into one of today’s words major diseases: procrastination.
How many times did you use the word “soon”? And how many times did you actually do what you said you were going to do after using it?
You know it.
“Soon” is too vague to prompt us to action. And this uncertainty and wandering is what ultimately causes our lack of execution.
One way to get rid of this word is to schedule your commitments. Prioritize.
Make a plan for something and eliminate everything else.
Avoid this word like the plague, and start putting clear and defined deadlines.
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